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The Role of the Commons and Common Property in an Economy of Abundance

This Article : « The Role of the Commons and Common Property in an Economy of Abundance » , written by Wolfgang Hoeschele takes a global approach about The Commons, we therefore strongly recommand it .

Wolfgang Hoeschele received his BA in biology and art from the College of Wooster in Ohio (1987), his MS in environmental science from Washington State University (1990), and his Ph.D. in geography from the Pennsylvania State University (1998). Since 1998, he has been teaching geography at Truman State University in Missouri.

You can read the whole Wolgang Hoeschele’s article on the P2P Foundation website

Or download the pdf on

Abstract by Wolgang Hoeschele on his article :
Economics is commonly defined as the science of the allocation of scarce resources – on the assumption that all resources worth studying are scarce. The problem is that neo-classical economics, and the economic systems based on it, create incentives to make resources scarce and thereby more profitable for those who control them. This has serious implications for freedom, equity, and sustainability. An economics of abundance explores how we can create mechanisms to keep or make resources abundant ; among these mechanisms, widely shared property is of key importance. Several old as well as newly emerging forms of the commons and of common property are discussed in this context.

If the goal is to end poverty, it is primarily necessary to redistribute productive assets to the people who actualy use them (by such means as « land to the tiller » agrarian reform, for example) and to provide for comprehensive basic education and health care, deploying teachers, doctors and nurses from within the country who can be paid in local currency. This goal requires practically no foreign currency (as happened in Kerala, India). If the goal is to promote domestic industries geared towards producing affordable goods for ordinary people, a modest degree of protectionism plus a disregard of foreign patents will also be quite effective, while requiring little finance from abroad. Such policies will produce no miracles, but neither will they produce long-term debt dependency, nor require governments to be responsible to foreign sources of finance rather than to their own people. quoted from Wouter Tebbens’s blog on

Wolfgang Hoeschele has also designed an interesting diagram in his book « The Economics of Abundance » (Gower Publ., p. 149).

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This modified version and explanations about are coming from the P2P Foundation’s blog .
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Publié ou mis à jour le 18 mars 2014